WAR
of
1812

"Tennessee Trails" through Bedford County




HENRY HART in the War of 1812
Henry Hart is listed on the muster rolls of Captain Thomas Scurry of the Second Regiment, Tennessee Volunteers Mounted Gunmen commanded by "Col. Thomas Williamson in the service of the United States from the 28th day of September, 1814, to the 27th of April, 1815. These men mostly came from: Bedford, Davidson, Robertson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, Wilson, Giles & Smith counties. This regiment was part of General John Coffee's brigade that fought at Pensacola and New Orleans. Marching from Fayetteville to Camp Gaines (30 miles from Fort Montgomery), they helped Jackson take the port of Pensacola from the Spanish on 7 November 1814. Williamson's men then participated in all of the engagements at New Orleans, where they were part of the left line of Jackson's breastworks. In March 1815 they returned to Tennessee via the Natchez Trace." [Tennessee State Archives] National Archive records bear out the fact that a Henry Hart of Bedford County was with this unit.

Also listed is James Pitt [Jr.]. It is fairly certain that these two men knew each other but I'm sure that neither James Pitt nor Henry Hart would realize that 96 years later, James Pitt's great-grandson (Clarence Pitts Ashby) would marry Henry Hart's great-granddaughter (Elma Hart).

Henry applied for and received a land grant for his services in the war. Although he did not use it, his children did. Almost all the Harts, except for Henry and his son Derrel, took this grant and settled in Pope Co., Illinois (Oak, Illinois) This land grant, called the GRANTING BOUNTY, gave land to certain officers and men who had been engaged in military service of the country. Two Henry Harts from Bedford County applied and received land grants from this act. Most of the grants were in Arkansas, Missouri & Illinois. Henry's children probably used this grant when they moved to Illinois. Henry was known to have been in Bedford Co., Tenn around the 1812-14 time frame. After Henry died, his wife Nancy Rainey Hart, moved to Illinois to live with their daughter Nancy Hart Gossage.

Henry was with Col Williamson. (Some brief history on Col. Williamson further down the page). In other documents (his war record) it shows that he served under Captain Thomas Scurry who served under Col. Thomas Williamson. I say this because there are two Col. Williamsons (a John & a Thomas). If you go to the Tennessee State Archives (www.state.tn.us/sos/statelib/tslahome.htm ) and go to Tennessee State History & Genealogy > Military Records > Regimental Histories of Tenn. During the War of 1812 > Col. Thomas Williamson, you will find what Henry Hart's unit did. Also if you will type into any search engine - "Henry Hart" War of 1812 - The muster rolls of Sumter County, Tenn will pop up. Scroll down to Captain Thomas Scurry and see brief history and soldiers names, including, Henry Hart (and my other ggg-great grandfather, James Pitt). It is my understanding that men from many counties around Sumter Co. came to that county to serve with Col. Thomas Williamson. They formed up in Sumter County and were sworn in at Fayetteville, Tenn. From there General John Coffee (Gen. Jackson's best friend) took them to New Orleans to join Jackson.

There is evidence that Henry also fought in the Creek & Indian War during the War of 1812. He got a land grant(s) for both the Creek & Indian Wars and the New Orleans Campaign. Henry, his wife Nancy and their children used the grant and moved to Illinois. Almost all the Harts, except for Henry's son Derrel, took this grant and settled in Pope Co., Illinois (Oak, Illinois). Some descendents think that Henry returned to Bedford County, Tn for business reasons, became ill and died. Thus his burial at the Mt. Herman cemetery. This land grant, called the GRANTING BOUNTY, gave land to certain officers and men who had been engaged in military service of the country. Most of the grants were in Arkansas, Missouri & Illinois.

Pay records for the first of three enlistments for Henry Hart. This regiment of about 600 men joined Andrew Jackson's forces at Natchez in early 1813. While the bulk of Jackson's troops traveled by boat to Natchez, General Coffee's mounted men went overland after rendezvousing near Franklin, Tenn in mid-January 1813. Henry Hart was a Sergeant for this campaign. For the trip back to Tennesse via the notorious Natchez Trace he must have been doing his job well because he was promoted to 2nd Sergeant. This was the famous trip where Washington, DC instructed General Jackson to disband his men while in Louisiana. Jackson was furious, he knew that the men would have a rough time making it back home up the Natchez Trace. Most of his men were young men 18-25 years of age. They were from not only friends of his family but from prominent families of Middle and West Tennessee. At Jackson's own expense he funded the army for the trip back to Nashville. Many men were sick, so Jackson had his officers turn over their horses to the sick. Except for the sick, everyone walked, including Jackson. Jackson constantly walked back and forth among his army, making sure that everyone was all right. His men became so impressed with him that they started calling him "Old Hickory" (one of the toughest things that they knew of). This made Jackson immensely popular in Middle Tennesse because Jackson had talken care of the state's young sons at his own expense when the federal gov't had abandoned them. This was probably the most difficult of all three enlistments for our Henry Hart. Notice how much extra he got paid for providing his own horse. Dec 10, 1812 - Feb 9, 1813 $8.00 per month $28.58 clothing

Contributed by Charles Patton, Third Great Grandson of Henry Hart

COLONEL THOMAS BENTON
DESIGNATION: 2nd Regiment of Tennessee Volunteer Infantry
DATES: December 1812 - April 1813
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Williamson, Rutherford, White, Bedford, Davidson, Franklin, Lincoln, and Maury Counties
BRIEF HISTORY:
This regiment, along with Colonel William Hall's First Regiment of Tennessee Volunteer Infantry and Colonel John Coffee's Volunteer Cavalry, comprised the army under Andrew Jackson that undertook the expedition to Natchez in late 1812. Many of these men re-enlisted in September 1813 and were then put under the command of Colonel William Pillow, maintaining the same designation of the Second Regiment of Tennessee Volunteer Infantry. See the entry under Colonel William Pillow for further information.

COLONEL NEWTON CANNON
DESIGNATION: 2nd Regiment of Volunteer Mounted Riflemen
DATES: September 1813 - December 1813
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Bedford, Rutherford, Smith, Dickson, Franklin, Lincoln, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties
CAPTAINS: Robert Allen, George Brandon, Ota Cantrell, John B. Demsey, William Edwards, John Hanby, John Harpole, David Hogan, Francis Jones, William Martin, Andrew Patterson, James Walton, Isaac Williams, Thomas Yardley
BRIEF HISTORY:
Along with Colonel John Alcorn's regiment, this unit was part of General John Coffee's brigade that conducted the first campaign into the Creek Nation. Marching from Fayetteville, they went through Huntsville; crossed the Tennessee River at Ditto's Landing (mid-October 1813); stopped at Fort Strother; and fought in the battles at Tallushatchee and Talladega (3 November and 9 November 1813). Muster rolls show that just about every company in this regiment suffered casualties in these battles.

COLONEL STEPHEN COPELAND
DESIGNATION: 3rd Regiment of Tennessee Militia
DATES: January 1814 - May 1814
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Overton, Smith, Wilson, Franklin, Warren, Bedford, and Lincoln Counties
CAPTAINS: John Biler(Byler), John Dawson, William Douglass, William Evans, Solomon George, William Hodges, John Holshouser, Alexander Provine, Richard Sharp, George W. Still, James Tait, Moses Thompson, Allen Wilkinson, David Williams.
BRIEF HISTORY:
There were approximately 660 men in this regiment. They were part of a brigade led by General Thomas Johnson (the other regiment of Johnson's brigade was led by Colonel R. C. Napier). Jackson's report of the Battle of Horseshoe Bend (27 March 1814) mentions that Copeland's regiment was held in reserve during this engagement. But a part of the regiment saw action, as muster rolls show casualties from this battle in the companies of Captains Moses Thompson and Allen Wilkinson. Their line of march took them from Fayetteville (where they were mustered into service), through Fort Deposit, Fort Strother, and finally to Fort Williams.

COLONEL WILLIAM METCALF
DESIGNATION: 1st Regiment West Tennessee Militia
DATES: November 1814 - May 1815
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Davidson, Bedford, Franklin, Lincoln, Maury, Warren, and Giles Counties
CAPTAINS: John Barnhart, Daniel M. Bradford, Barbe Collins, John Cunningham, Lewis Dillahunty, Alexander Hill, Bird S. Hurt, John Jackson, Thomas Marks, William Mullen, Andrew Patterson, William Sitton, Obidiah Waller
BRIEF HISTORY:
Part of the division under Major General William Carroll's at New Orleans, this regiment comprised the right section of Carroll's line at the breastworks at Chalmette. Muster rolls show casualties in the engagements of December 1814 and January 1815. Lieutenant Colonel James Henderson was killed in the skirmish of 28 December 1814. Captain Daniel Bradford led the elite corps known as "Carroll's Life Guard." The division reached New Orleans in mid-December 1814 after an excursion down the Mississippi River

MAJOR WILLIAM RUSSELL
DESIGNATION: Separate Battalion of Volunteer Mounted Gunmen
DATES: September 1814 - March 1815
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Franklin, Bedford, Blount, Madison (Ala.), Rutherford, Warren, and Wilson Counties
CAPTAINS: William Chism, John Cowan, Fleman Hodges, George Mitchie, William Russell, John Trimble, Isaac Williams
BRIEF HISTORY:
Along with a battalion commanded by Major Chiles, this unit served in the Pensacola/Mobile region and was a part of Major Uriah Blue's expedition that roamed along the Escambia River in Florida in search of renegade Creeks toward the end of the war. Approximately 500 men served in this battalion, one of whom was David Crockett, a sergeant in Capt. John Conway's company. From Fayetteville, where the battalion was mustered in, they traveled to Fort Stephens (crossing the Tennessee River at Muscle Shoals); leaving their horses behind, the battalion marched to Pensacola (via Fort Montgomery) where they participated in the battle of 7 November 1814; and returned to Fort Montgomery. At Fort Montgomery they were put under the command of Major Uriah Blue.

COLONEL ROBERT STEELE
DESIGNATION: 4th Regiment West Tennessee Militia Infantry
DATES: January 1814 - May 1814
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Jackson, White, Bedford, Giles, Lincoln, and Maury Counties
CAPTAINS: James Bennett, Robert Campbell, John Chitwood, Samuel Maxwell, James Randals, Richard Ratton, James Shinault
BRIEF HISTORY:
Part of the brigade led by General Thomas Johnson, this regiment was composed of about 450 men. Colonel Steele and his men were left at Fort Strother while Jackson marched the rest of his army to Horseshoe Bend where the climactic battle of the Creek War was fought (27 March 1814). Steele's regiment served as wagon guards for supplies from Fort Deposit and built boats to transport supplies down the Coosa River to Fort Williams. From Camp Blount at Fayetteville, the regiment took the much-traveled route through Huntsville, Fort Deposit, and Fort Strother.

COLONEL THOMAS WILLIAMSON
DESIGNATION: 2nd Regiment West Tennessee Volunteer Mounted Gunmen
DATES: September 1814 - April 1815
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Bedford, Davidson, Robertson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, Wilson, Giles, and Smith Counties
CAPTAINS: Giles Burdett, James Cook, John Crane, John Doak, John Dobbins, John Hutchings, William Martin, Anthony Metcalf, Robert Moore, James Nealy, James Pace, Thomas Porter, Thomas Scurry, Robert Steele, Richard Tate, Beverly Williams
BRIEF HISTORY:
Along with Colonel Robert Dyer's unit, this regiment was part of General John Coffee's brigade that fought at Pensacola and New Orleans. Marching from Fayetteville to Camp Gaines (30 miles from Fort Montgomery), they helped Jackson take the port of Pensacola from the Spanish on 7 November 1814. Williamson's men then participated in all of the engagements at New Orleans, where they were part of the left line of Jackson's breastworks. In March 1815 they returned to Tennessee via the Natchez Trace

COLONEL JOHN K. WYNN
DESIGNATION: 1st Regiment West Tennessee Militia
DATES: October 1813 - January 1814
MEN MOSTLY FROM:
Wilson, Jackson, Robertson, Bedford, Lincoln, Montgomery, Robertson, Sumner, and White Counties
CAPTAINS: Bailey Butler, Robert Braden, William Carothers, James Cole, James Holleman, William McCall, Bayless E. Prince, John Porter, John Spinks, William Wilson
BRIEF HISTORY:
Along with Colonel McCrory's regiment, this unit was part of the brigade commanded by General Isaac Roberts. Wynn's regiment totaled approximately 417 men. They participated in Jackson's first campaign into Creek territory where they fought at the Battle of Talladega (9 November 1813). At this battle the regiment sustained heavy casualties, especially in Captain John Porter's company, where the captain himself was among the wounded. Colonel Wynn was a planter and politician from Wilson County who was serving as state senator at the time of the outbreak of the Creek War. His regiment was mustered in at Fayetteville in early October 1813 and mustered out in early January 1814.

Source: Tennessee State Library & Archives

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